Wednesday, 22 November 2017

Malaria: Sign & Symptoms, Prevention and Treatment

Malaria should be prevented at all cost

Malaria is one of the most deadly tropical disease in the world. If it is not detected, diagnosed & treated at the early stage it can be highly disastrous. Prevention of the malaria is the best way to deal with the disease. It is a disease that is very common in Africa. Malaria has kill more people in Africa than even HIV/AIDS has done but it is not even given 10% of the attention that is given to HIV/AIDS. Malaria kills about 1.8 million people every year in Africa & over two million people in the world. Over half a million children under the age of five die of malaria each year in Africa. Most of these deaths could have been avoided with precautionary measures, early detection & proper treatment. A lot of people still die even when the disease is diagnosed on time because they are too poor to afford the treatment . Children, women & people with illness are at serious risk of the disease because their immune system is weak.  

Signs & Symptoms of Malaria

Malaria is accompany by the following signs & symptoms:

  • High fever, headaches, excessive sweating, tiredness, & painful muscles. 
  • Loss of appetite, dizziness or feeling faint when getting up from a lying position, nausea.   
  • Chills/shivering, abdominal pain, diarrhoea, slight jaundice, cough, enlarged liver & spllen.
  • Development of fever or flu-like symptoms.

Symptoms can still occur up to six months after leaving a malaria risk area.

Prevention of Malaria

  • Malaria is caused by a parasite transmitted to humans by the bite of an infected mosquito. Preventing mosquito bites is the most effective way of preventing malaria. Measures to prevent mosquito bites should be adopted in malaria high risk areas. 

  • Also mosquitoes should be prevented from breeding easily. Ensure that the larva's are destroyed and malaria high risk areas should be fumigated from time to time. Anti-malaria drugs should be taken regularly by people living in high risk areas. 

  • Precautionary measures to minimize mosquito exposure should include the following:

  • Sleep under a mosquito treated net & ensure that the net is treated from time to time.
  • Ensure that you have mosquito nets installed in your windows & doors.
  • Apply an insect repellent to exposed skin at night repeatedly making sure that you do not exceed the recommended doses especially for children.
  • Make sure that doors are kept closed at night.
  • Spray your rooms with an insecticide aerosol from time to time after closing your windows & doors.

Prevention of Malaria for People Living in High Risk Malaria Areas  

People living in high risk area should adopt the following measures to reduce the number of mosquitoes that they are exposed to :

  • Build houses away from marshy areas & water, which are potential breeding sites for mosquitoes.
  • Make sure there are no artificial pools & standing water after rainfall as this provides breeding grounds for mosquitoes.
  • Make sure there is good drainage for rainwater & household water near houses.
  • Apply larvicides to standing water, pools, drainage near houses where mosquitoes breed.
  • Fumigate the environment from time to time.
  • Pregnant women & small children living or visiting malaria risk areas should take appropriate precaution to prevent mosquito bites & where applicable appropriate anti-malaria drugs should be taken.
  • High risk people living in malaria areas, should consult their doctors or clinic for taking of anti-malaria drugs during the summer months.

Treatment of Malaria

Whenever you are experiencing of the signs & symptoms consult a doctor & complain who is going to send you for a test to actually confirm if you have the disease. 

  • A blood smear will reveal whether or not there are malaria parasites in the blood. Treatment differs according to which parasites you are infected with.
  • Early ,immediate & effective treatment of malaria is very important to prevent it from progressing to celebral malaria which could be fatal. 
  • There should be a distinction between uncomplicated malaria & severe malaria & deal with each appropriately. 
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